Okay, so this is probably my dearest baking recipe. This is my “fancy white cake” recipe, if you will. This is the recipe I use for wedding cakes and special occasions. It is more work than any other cake recipe and it is infinitely more perfect in flavor and texture because of it. Call me shallow, but I DO judge books (and movies) by their covers (and rightfully so, or else there wouldn’t be people out there being paid to try and make them look appealing, thank you very much) and therefore it is super important to me that when I cut into a cake I’ve made, it makes this perfect, flat, clean cut and doesn’t crumble into a hot mess all over the place. So this cake really is perfect (see above). My favorite pairing with this light vanilla-almond white cake isfrom a raspberry jam (with seeds if people don’t mind—yum!). The original recipe pairs it with a white chocolate buttercream (used in the picture above to create rosettes), which is delicious, light, and sweet and I will post as well. It isn’t my normal crusting buttercream that I use for wedding cakes, but I will post that another day. So if you are feeling ambitious or have a special event coming up, give it a go! Or call me and I will make you something special ; )
THE white cake
|2¾||cups cake flour, sifted|
|4||teaspoons baking powder|
|1½||cups white sugar|
|¾||cup butter, unsalted and softened|
|1||tsp vanilla extract|
|1||tsp almond extract|
- Measure sifted flour, baking powder, and salt; sift together.
- In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Add 1/2 cup sugar gradually, and continue beating only until meringue will hold up in soft peaks.
- Cream butter or margarine. Gradually add remaining 1 cup sugar, and cream together until light and fluffy. Add sifted ingredients alternately with milk a small amount at a time, beating after each addition until smooth. Mix in flavorings. Add meringue, and beat thoroughly into batter. Spread batter in a 15 x 10 x 1 inch pan which has been lined on the bottom with parchment paper.
- Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool cake in pan 10 minutes, then remove from pan and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. This cake may also be baked in two 9 inch round pans for 30 to 35 minutes, or in three 8 inch round pans for 25 to 30 minutes. (note: I often have to cook these longer to get them solid in the middle. Add 5 minutes at a time on to your total until done. Normally 5-10 minutes longer will be perfect depending on pan size).
white chocolate buttercream
recipe and cake design idea courtesy of countrycleaver.com
|1||cup unsalted butter, softened|
|2½||cups powdered sugar|
|pinch of salt|
|6||ounces good quality white chocolate, chopped (NOT candy melts! You can get by with white choc chips if you need to)|
|¼||cup heavy whipping cream|
|¼||tsp. vanilla extract|
- Put the chopped white chocolate into a small bowl. Heat the chocolate in 30 second increments in the microwave set to 60% power. Stir after each increment, and continue to heat 30 seconds at a time, until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Set aside and allow to completely cool.
- Once white chocolate has cooled, sift the salt and powdered sugar over the butter, in a large bowl. Cream the butter and sugar mixture together until light and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Measure the whipping cream into a cup, and stir in the vanilla extract.
With the mixer running on low speed, gradually pour the cream mixture the bowl.
Once the cream mixture has been incorporated into the frosting, fold on the melted (but cooled) white chocolate until incorporated.
- Increase the mixer speed to medium-high, and beat frosting for an additional 3 minutes.
- Makes about 2 ½ cups of frosting.
- For the rosettes, use a 1M tip and do swirls working from the center out (kind of like an @ but reflected so you are piping clockwise). Do them quick and to keep them from looking like swirls and more like roses, keep the tip close to the cake the whole time. If you lift it up, the swirl folds over itself and looks just like a swirl which is fine but not as impressive looking. Do this a ton of times in nice even rows, spacing accordingly. Good luck!